Thursday, December 5, 2013

Stumbling Upon Meaning

The sister missionaries in our ward asked my husband and I to go with them to visit an investigator tonight. I thought it was kind of weird that they would randomly pick us, but we happily fulfilled their request.
As we sat with this woman and her 15 month old son, she started talking about the troubles she's been having lately. She just recently left her husband who has been abusing her for five years. I sat and listened while my test tightened and burned and urged me to open my mouth and let her know that I understood every feeling of loneliness, pain, fear, betrayal, and guilt that she explained.
Eventually, I gave in. I told her that I had a similar experience. I shared some insights that helped me get through my own trials. I wanted to give her advice and tell her what I thought she should do, but I knew what she really needed was to talk. I listened, only stopping her when she tried to justify her husband's actions or put herself down. It is far too common for women in these situations to blame themselves. I did. But it's not our faults.
I know that our sister missionaries were definitely inspired to ask my husband and I to be there tonight, because they had no idea that I had ever been married before I had my current husband. They had no idea that I would have this strong connection to this investigator. But now I know that I have completely moved on from my past and can use it to help others. I have accidentally found meaning in the pain that I felt so overwhelmed by and lost in for so long. I hope to continue to help her and others.

Monday, December 2, 2013

My New Life

I've been wanting to write down some feelings for a while, and I briefly contemplated doing so elsewhere because my life is vastly different from how it was even during my last post. Since then, I have met an amazing man who is extremely understanding about the things I've been through. I've been very honest with him, he's been very patient with me, and we are now happily married. However, even with a different life, I will always bee a divorced Mormon woman. It will always be a part of me, and it may be just as helpful to talk about life beyond that as to openly discuss the pain of it.
So anyway, about those feelings...
When I got divorced, I was so incredibly lonely that sometimes I actually wished that I had had a child while I was with him. I figured that, even being divorced, I would be able to have the kid most of the time and I would have someone to love. Truthfully, with the craziness that runs rampant in my ex's family, they probably would have tried to rip the kid away from me or accuse me of having the child with another man and make my life miserable through that route. But in my fantasy land, having a baby would mean having someone to love and take care of and fill that gaping void of loneliness. As perfect as it was in my head, I'm incredibly grateful that I don't have that forever connection to my ex and his family.
Now I'm six months pregnant with my current husband's child, and I can't wait for the little one to get here. I know that the appreciation and love I already have for him is so much greater than it would have been if I hadn't spent so much time longing for someone to care for. I can't wait to hold him and smell him and tell him how long I've been waiting for him to come into my life.
I'll admit, I'm terrible at being pregnant. I'm tired all the time and just want to whine and complain about every single ache and pain. I try not to be too much of a burden to my husband, but, fortunately, he's amazing and helps me so much. As uncomfortable and achy as I am, I would choose to go through this a million times over being alone again and dealing with the pain of not knowing whether he would ever come. I'm not happy about all the things that I've been through, but I'm grateful for what they have taught me. I have so much more love for my husband and developing child than I think I possibly could have otherwise.